ON THIS DAY: December 14, 2018

December 14th is

Biscuits and Gravy Day

Bouillabaisse Day

Roast Chestnuts Day *

World Monkey Day

Light on Yoga Day *


MORE! Aphra Behn, Roald Amundsen and Wilma Mankiller, click



Bangladesh –
Martyred Intellectuals Day *

Czech Republic – Praha:
Magnetic Music Festival

Taiwan – Guandu: International
Nature Art Festival (until 12-31-18)


On This Day in HISTORY

1009 – Atsunaga-shinnō born; in 1036, he will ascend the Chrysanthemum Throne of Japan as Emperor Go-Suzaku (Suzaku II), reigning until 1045

The Chrysanthemum Throne

1287 – The Zuiderzee sea wall in the Netherlands collapses, killing over 50,000 people

Landsat photo of the Zuiderzee in the 21st Century

1542 – James V of Scotland dies, and his six-day-old daughter, Princess Mary Stuart becomes Mary, Queen of Scots

1546 – Tycho Brahe born, Danish astronomer, chemist and writer, known for his accurate and comprehensive astronomical and planetary observations

Unraniborg, Brahe’s astronomical observatory and laboratory

1631 – Anne Conway born, English philosopher; lifelong friend and correspondent of Henry More, of the Cambridge Platonist school; after she converted to Quakerism, and made her home a center for Quaker activity, she was persecuted and even imprisoned; author of Principia philosophiae antiquissimae et recentissimae (Principles of the Most Ancient and Modern Philosophy)

1640 – Aphra Behn born, English playwright and author and poet, one of the first women to earn her living as a writer, becoming a literary role model for future generations of women authors; she sometimes used the pen name Astrea, especially for her early work

1730 – Capel Bond born, English organist-composer

1789 – Marianna Szymanowska born, Polish composer, and one of the first professional virtuoso pianists of the 19th century. After touring Europe extensively, she settled in St. Petersburg, and composed music for the Russian imperial court

1812 – Napoleonic Wars: The French invasion of Russia comes to an end as the starving remnants of the Grande Armée leave Russian soil, marking a turning point which triggers a major shift in European politics. The Grande Armée had totaled 685,000 men at the start of the invasion, but French dead now reached nearly 400,000, with another 50,000 wounded and 80,000 deserters. Prussia and Austria will shortly break their alliances with France and join the opposing allied nations

1851 – Mary Tappan Wright born, American novelist and short story writer; her first novel,  Aliens (1902), a portrait of northerners in a racially tense Southern town, attracted much attention 

 1856 – Louis Marshall born, American constitutional and civil rights lawyer; a founding member of the American Jewish Committee (AJC); he had a talent for languages:  German was his first language – he learned English when he went to school – but he also knew French, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and Yiddish

1883 –Manolis Kalomiris born, Greek composer; founder of the Greek National School of Music

1883 – Jane Cowl born, American stage and silent film actress, who also co-authored several plays with playwright and screenwriter Jane Murfin, under the joint pen name Allan Langdon Martin; their biggest hit was Smilin’ Through (1919)

1891 – Katherine MacDonald born, American actress and one of the first women to produce motion pictures, producing nine silent feature films for her company, Katherine MacDonald Pictures, from 1919 to 1921, including Passion’s Playground in 1920, which included an early featured part for Rudolph Valentino. She left the movie business after 1926, and ran a successful cosmetic business through the early 1930s

1896 – Glasgow District Subway Company opens the Glasgow Underground Railway

1896 – Jimmy Doolittle born, American pilot and general; recipient of the Medal of Honor for personal valor and leadership of the WWII Doolittle Raid on Tokyo

1897 – Margaret Chase Smith born, American Republican politician; U.S. Representative for Maine (1940-1949); U.S. Senator for Maine (1949-1973); one first members of Congress to criticize the House Un-American Activities Committee  (HUAC) in her speech, ‘The Declaration of Conscience’

1902 – Commercial Pacific Cable Company lays the first Pacific telegraph cable from San Francisco to Honolulu

1904 – Virginia Coffey born, American social reformer and civil rights activist; in the 1920s, she taught at an all-black school in Cincinnati Ohio, and joined the local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); she worked for the YWCA in the early 1930s, and founded the first Girl Scouts troop for African-American girls in the 1940s. She was named Deputy Director of the Mayor of Cincinnati’s Friendly Relations Committee (1948-1962), working on integration of city    swimming pools and parks. Director of Memorial Community Center (1965-1968), and executive director of the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission (1968-1973)

1908 – Mária Szepes born, Hungarian author, screenwriter and philosopher; her first novel, The Red Lion (1946), was banned by the communist regime in Hungary

1911 – Roald Amundsen, Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting become the first to reach the South Pole

1911 – Spike Jones born, American singer, bandleader and musical parodist

1916 – Shirley Jackson born, American author of eerie fiction; noted for her short story The Lottery

1917 – June Taylor born, American dancer and choreographer, founder of the June Taylor Dancers

1918 – Light on Yoga Day * – B.K.S. Iyengar born in Mysore, now part of India, was one of the foremost yoga teachers in the world, founder of the ‘Iyenfar Yoga’ style; and author of many books on yoga practice and philosophy, including Light on Yoga, Light on Pranayama, and Light on Life

1920 – Clark Terry born, American Jazz flugelhorn pioneer

1939 – The Soviet Union is expelled from the League of Nations for invading Finland

1939 – Ann Cryer born, British nuclear disarmament activist and politician; MP for Keighley (1997-2010)

1940 – Plutonium (Pu-238) is first isolated at Berkeley, California

1941 – Ellen Willis born, American liberal political essayist, feminist, and the first pop music critic for the New Yorker; contributor to the Village Voiceand Rolling Stone

1955 – Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Ceylon, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Jordan, Laos, Libya, Nepal, Portugal, Romania and Spain join the United Nations.

1955 – Jill C. Pipher born, American mathematician; first director of the Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics (ICERM, 2011–2016); president of the Association of Women in Mathematics (2011-2013)

1956 – Linda Fabiani born, Scottish National Party politician; Deputy Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament since 2016; Convener of the Scottish Parliament Scotland Bill Committee (2011-2016); Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture and Minister for Gaelic (2007-2009); Member of the Scottish Parliament for East Kilbride since 2011; Member of the Scottish Parliament for Central Scotland (1999-2011); Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Housing of Scotland

1961 – Tanganyika becomes a member of the United Nations

1962 – NASA’s Mariner 2 becomes the first spacecraft to fly by Venus

1962 – Bob Dylan’s first single “Mixed-Up Confusion” is released

1964 – Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States: The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously upholds Title II of the 1964 Civil Rights Act under the Commerce Clause powers granting Congress the power to regulate enterprises with “a direct and substantial relation to the interstate flow of goods and people,” including places of public accommodation

1967 – Ewa Białołęcka born, Polish fantasy short story writer and novelist, noted for her Kroniki Drugiego Kręgu series, and short story collection Tkacz Iluzji; she is also a stained glass artist

1968 – Kelley Armstrong born, Canadian fantasy novelist; noted for her series and trilogies, including Women of the Otherworld and Darkness Rising

1968 – Marvin Gaye’s I Heard It Through the Grapevine is #1 on the charts

1971 – Over 200 East Pakistani intellectuals are executed by the Pakistan Army and their local allies, commemorated in Bangladesh as Martyred Intellectuals Day *

1973 – The South African General Assembly declares that the South African regime has “no right to represent the people of South Africa” and that the liberation movements recognised by the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) are “the authentic representatives of the overwhelming majority of the South African people”

1981 – Israel’s Knesset ratifies the Golan Heights Law, extending Israeli law to the occupied Golan Heights, seized by Israel from Syria in 1967

1981 – Rebecca Jarvis born, American media journalist; Chief Business, Economics and Technology Correspondent for ABC News, and the host, creator and managing editor of Real Biz with Rebecca Jarvis and the podcast No Limits with Rebecca Jarvis

1985 – Wilma Mankiller takes office as the principal chief of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, the first woman to lead a major American tribe in modern times

1995 – Classified documents from the White House are released, revealing the FBI had spied on John Lennon and his anti-war activities during the early ’70s in a possible attempt to have Lennon deported

1996 – Rwandan refugees who previously refused to return home begin re-entering Rwanda after 2 1/2 years in Tanzania

2000 – The Federal Communication Commission allows the $111 billion merger of American Online and Time Warner

2000 – World Monkey Day * started as a joke written on a friend’s calendar by Casey Sorrow, an art student at Michigan State University, but their friends decided to actually celebrate it – when he later included it in a cartoon series he worked on, the idea began to take off, and is now a truly international event that raises appreciation and awareness of primates, a number of them threatened or endangered species

2004 – The Millau Viaduct, the tallest bridge in the world, is formally inaugurated near Millau, France

2012 – Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting: Twenty-seven people, including twenty children aged six to seven, are shot to death in Sandy Hook CT

2015 – Holiday Insights launches Roasted Chestnuts Day * on the first of the Twelve Days of Christmas

2017 – The U.S. Federal Communications Commission capitulates to business interests and votes to repeal net neutrality with a 3-2 majority.


About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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2 Responses to ON THIS DAY: December 14, 2018

  1. Malisha says:

    Wow, Margaret Chase Smith’s words could have been spoken today.
    Should be spoken today. Because tomorrow there may not be an opportunity to say them.

Comments are closed.